08 April 2010

The Last Ski?

As the snow rotted out and bare patches began opening on the hills of The Moulton cross country ski area just north of my home in Walkerville, I was ready to put the skis away and take up trout fishing. Several snowstorms later (intercut by glorious, sunny, "blue bird days"), I have some good skiing in the hills near Sugarloaf along the Continental Divide (aka "Mt Haggin" ski area) about 25 miles from Butte, Montana. The area is a little higher and wetter than The Moulton, and cold nights (in the teens) have kept the snow.

MollyTheDog likes it there because we are usually joined by the St Bernard from a local lodge (for size comparisons, note that MTD is 55 pounds):

The backcountry snow has a solid base (the dogs can run on it) and you can access wonderful off-trail areas via the Crooked John trial (first tracks!):

Which leads to the Little California Trail:

Which leads to open slopes along the Divide (Spire Loop area) with a "quick exit" down the Sleepy Hollow trail and back to the parking area:

The last ski of the season? Maybe, given today's blue bird weather. Depending on how the fishing is, though, backcountry skiing can easily continue into May, and later for those willing to trek into the remote, higher backcountry of the Pintler and Tobacco Root mountains.

3 comments:

livinginpatagonia.com said...

We were lucky enough to fly over the area a couple weeks ago. That region seemed to have the best coverage in the whole area. Especially the north side of Mt Short.

I hope you ski more, the fish can wait!

secret agent woman said...

I'm glad to hear you are enjoying the last snows of winter.

Elizabeth said...

MollyTheDog looks tiny compared to her friend!!!